» #83 Nov 2002
THE GOODIES CLARION AND GLOBE
THE OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF 'THE GOODIES RULE - OK' FAN CLUB
Issue No. 83 12th November 2002
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'The Goodies Rule - OK!'
P.O. Box 325
Chadstone VIC 3148, AUSTRALIA
THE LADS AND LASSES OF THE C&G
- Brett Allender
- Lisa Manekofsky
- David Balston
COOL COR COMIC REVIEWER
- Linda Kay
- Raymond, Garry Johnstone, Richard Nolan
... AND 1000 OBEs TO: Graeme Garden!
1. AND NOW ...AN INTERVIEW WITH GRAEME GARDEN!
2. BOFFO IDEAS - Club happenings and ideas.
3. SPOTTED!!! - The latest Goodies sightings.
4. 2001 AND A BIT - Tim, Graeme and Bill sightings post-Goodies.
5. GOODIES EPISODE SUMMARY - South Africa
6. GOODIES COR!! COMICS SYNOPSIS #12
(Note: Quiz & Quote will return in the December edition)
1. AND NOW … AN INTERVIEW WITH GRAEME GARDEN!
Avid C&G readers may recall that some time back in mid-2001, we asked you to send in some questions for Graeme Garden, who had very generously offered to answer them (or to program his computer to answer them at least!) And now after one year, 7 months, 4 days ("... a helluva long time!") spent trapped inside a 350 foot block of concrete until the Brighton to Birkenhead freeway was completed, it's our great pleasure to be able to feature Graeme ("that's GRA-E-M-E!") and his answers for your enjoyment:
YOU LOOKED PETRIFIED PERFORMING 'FUNKY GIBBON' ON 'TOP OF THE POPS'. WERE YOU MORE SCARED BY THE PROSPECT OF SINGING LIVE ON NATIONAL TELEVISION OR BY TIM'S DANCING NEXT TO YOU?
I was acting. My natural grace and cool moves would have blown the others off stage - so to avoid showing them up, I played the part of someone deeply embarrassed and awkward. With considerable success.
IS THE BUSH BABY A REAL ANIMAL OR JUST A BIT OF FLUFF IN YOUR POCKET? AND DO YOU STILL CARRY A BUSH BABY AROUND IN YOUR POCKET?
The bush baby on the show was just a bit of fluff, but I always carry a real one around in my pocket.
DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR BROWN SUITS FROM THE GOODIES IN YOUR WARDROBE? AND HOW MUCH MONEY WOULD YOU WANT TO WEAR THEM AGAIN?
I think I have one somewhere. I'd probably give quite a lot of money to be able to fit into it again.
BESIDES THE VARIOUS RADIO 4 COMEDIES YOU'RE INVOLVED WITH, WHAT ELSE ARE YOU UP TO THESE DAYS?
I've just been working with Rory Bremner the impressionist on the script for his show in the West End [excellent reviews], and we'll be working together again on a TV special.
Various radio/TV pilot shows - mostly panel games.
Developing a TV sitcom.
Developing a radio comedy drama.
Possibly writing some episodes for a BBC/Canadian project - series aimed at children.
Just recorded a guest appearance on a 'Dr Who' - with Sylvestre McCoy and Bonnie Langford - straight to audio!
Did an adaptation of a Feydeau farce which was on at the West Yorkshire Playhouse last winter with Griff Rhys Jones and Alison Steadman. etc
IN 'IF I RULED THE WORLD' IT SEEMED AS IF JEREMY HARDY WAS BEING TONY BLAIR AND YOU WERE BEING WILLIAM HAGUE. ALTHOUGH NEITHER OF YOU REALLY ACTED LIKE THEM, TO WHAT EXTENT WERE YOU THINKING "WHAT WOULD WILLIAM HAGUE DO?" WHEN DEVELOPING YOUR 'POLICIES' FOR THE SHOW?
To no extent, really, although our teams were Red and Blue. The idea for the show came up when it was becoming clear that there was no longer any real ideological difference between our two main parties. All we were doing was trying to score points by saying absolutely anything that would go down well with the 'voters', and to bullshit our way out of any awkward corner. Just like real politicians.
THE NAMESAKE OF EVERYONE'S FAVOURITE BBC-2 CONTROLLER (JANE ROOT) WAS THANKED IN 'THE LITTLE BOOK OF MORNINGTON CRESCENT'. HOW DID SHE ASSIST YOU IN PUTTING TOGETHER THE BOOK?
By forcing us to work on radio and write books.
CAN YOU SETTLE A POINT THAT A FRIEND AND I HAVE BEEN ARGUING ABOUT? IS JON NAISMITH THE 'MYSTERY VOICE' ON "I'M SORRY I HAVEN'T A CLUE'?
Good God, so that's where I've heard it before!
I HEARD SOME EPISODES OF "I'M SORRY I HAVEN'T A CLUE" FROM 1975 RECENTLY. UNSURPRISINGLY THEY WERE VERY DIFFERENT TO THE MORE RECENT EPISODES. THE MORE RECENT ONES SEEM SLICKER AND MORE CONFIDENT THAN THE OLDER ONES. OVER THE YEARS HAVE YOU IMPROVED THE WAYS YOU PLAN THE ROUNDS? OR ARE YOU JUST ALL MORE CONFIDENT WITH THE FORMAT THESE DAYS?
Jon Naismith is very strict, and doesn't let us get away with shoddy work.
I HEARD THAT THERE WERE PLANS TO MAKE A FILM OF YOUR NOVEL "THE SEVENTH MAN". DID THE FILM EVER GET MADE?
There were plans - at one time with director Christopher Miles and producer Sidney Glazier - who produced 'The Producers' for Mel Brooks. It never got made. 'The Whole Hog' - a short I wrote for Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones - has been touted around Hollywood by Mel. The last I heard it was with Dreamworks, being worked up into a screenplay by 12 year olds...
DURING YOUR EARLY CAREER YOU WERE COMPLETING YOUR DEGREE IN MEDICINE AND WORKING ON "I'M SORRY I'LL READ THAT AGAIN". WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO ABANDON YOUR ORIGINAL PLANS TO BECOME A DOCTOR?
All those sick people.
DO YOU HAVE A CONSPIRACY THEORY AS TO WHY THE BBC WILL NOT REPEAT THE GOODIES?
Of course I don't have a conspiracy theory. I am not allowed to.
Got a question or two that you'd like to ask Graeme? Please send them in to email@example.com.
2. BOFFO IDEAS
You can make it happen here. Liven up the club with a boffo idea for bob-a-job week. E-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org> with your comments, ideas or suggestions - meanwhile these are the boffo ideas which our club has been working on this month:
Many thanks to the 135 Goodies Rule OK members who have already responded to the recent survey regarding which Goodies episodes they would like to see on the first Goodies DVD release (of 8 episodes) in early 2003. At present the top four choices are Radio Goodies, Kung Fu Kapers, OK Tea Rooms and It Might As Well Be String, however there are still hopefully several hundred more votes to come in so these selections may change. The poll will now close on November 20th so please e-mail your choices in soon. A full listing of the final vote tallies for each episode will appear in the December newsletter.
Also a separate poll is presently being set up on the GROK website with many thanks to our technical guru, Tim Aslat. The poll will be ready within the next couple of days at: http://www.goodiesruleok.com/dvdpoll.php
(by Richard Nolan)
With Christmas just around the corner, the Goodies Rule OK have some great gift ideas for yourself or the Goodies fan in your life.
And until Christmas, we're offering specials on our entire range!
Don't worry if you live outside Australia, we will send worldwide and you can have them before Christmas.
These come in 2 designs, each in 2 colours - the first based on the t-shirt worn by the 3 Goodies in the series; the second based on The Goodies logo.
Full details and pictures of the shirts on the club website (www.goodiesruleok.com/tshirts), but we've just restocked all styles and sizes, so no problems with availability.
GOODIES CAPS (NEW!!)
Brand new and released just in time for Christmas is 'The Goodies' cap. Pictures will be on the website ASAP, but these come in two designs.
The first is a high-quality black brushed cotton cap with 'The Goodies' logo embroidered in bright yellow.
The second is a high-quality white brushed cotton cap with the 'Trandem' design embroidered in black and red.
Both caps feature adjustable rear straps with metal buckles and metal eyelets.
PRICES / ORDERING
Australian Orders: Full details on the website or contact Club Merchandise Officer, Richard Nolan(email@example.com)
Orders outside Australia, please read below
Prices are on the club website, or please email Club Merchandise Officer, Richard Nolan or our UK Rep. David Balston for ordering details.
If you want to receive your T-shirts before Christmas, you must order by November 22nd. Your shirts should be with you by the 3rd week of December.
Prices are on the club website, or please email Club Merchandise Officer, Richard Nolan or our US Rep. Lisa Manekofsky for ordering details.
If you want to receive your T-shirts before Christmas, you must order by November 22nd. Your shirts should be with you by the 3rd week of December.
Please contact Club Merchandise Officer, Richard Nolan with any further questions.
More exciting than getting your wig-spotters badge! If you've seen the Goodies recently, e-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org>with the details. Here's where we've Spotted!!! The Goodies this month:
* "The Secret Policeman's Ball - The Complete Edition" box set is due to be released in the UK on 11th November. It is a 4 disc set containing all of the Amnesty International Secret Policeman's Balls, including "Pleasure at Her Majesty's" in which the Goodies perform "Funky Gibbon" and "The Secret Policeman's Other Ball" which includes an appearance by Tim Brooke-Taylor.
At present the discs don't appear to be available individually, but I wouldn't be surprised if they were released that way sometime next year.
Here's a write-up about the set from
"A collection of all The Secret Policeman's Ball concerts in aid of Amnesty International. A unique collection, containing over 10 hours and spanning 3 decades, of live comedy and music for Amnesty. Includes performances by Peter Cook, Sting, Dudley Moore, Rowan Atkinson, John Cleese, Eric Clapton, Michael Palin and many more...
This 4 disc set includes: Pleasure At Her Majesty's (1976), Mermaid Frolics (1977), The Secret Policeman's Ball (1979), The Secret Policeman's Other Ball (1980), The Secret Policeman's Third Ball (1987), The Secret Policeman's Biggest Ball (1989), Amnesty International's Big 30 (1991), and The Secret Policeman's Balls (Music Edition).
Retail Price: £39.99"
(Lisa Manekofsky - Goodies-l -November 4th)
4. 2001 AND A BIT
If you've sighted Tim, Bill or Graeme in a post-Goodies role, e-mail <email@example.com> so that we can tell everyone where to spot a Goodie nowadays. Those of you seeking radio & tv alerts between issues of the C&G should consider signing up for the Goodies-L mailing list (more details available on the club website),as our crack (cracked?!) team of reporters attempt to post alerts as the information becomes available.
* "Golf Clubs with Tim Brooke-Taylor" is currently being shown 2pm Saturdays and Sundays on Discovery Home and Leisure and 10am and 4pm during the week up to Friday 18th October.
(David Balston - Goodies-l - October 15th)
* A few months ago, Tim Brooke-Taylor told us that he had a very small but regular part in a new BBC2 hospital comedy called 'tlc'. According to Digiguide, the series is scheduled to start next Monday, 11th November at 21:30. I don't know if Tim will appear in this particular episode.
(Lisa Manekofsky - Goodies-l -November 4th)
BBC TWO offer viewers a substantial dose of tlc
Alexander Armstrong and Reece Shearsmith head an impressive cast in a new comedy series for BBC TWO, tlc. Written by Fintan Coyle co-creator of The Weakest Link and set in a national health hospital, tlc follows the fortunes of Junior Doctor Flynn, a hard-pressed, stressed-out, wide-eyed, catholic junior doctor. This is his first job after qualifying and he is finding the reality of being a doctor with the responsibility it entails a rude awakening into his
Helping or hindering him on his way is the clued-up semi-cynical Dr. Noble, a Registrar, who's been at the hospital longer than Flynn and is the voice
of semi-dubious wisdom. The South Middlesex Hospital in which Dr Flynn begins his professional career is a place of perpetual night. Rats and crocodiles roam the wards and the only drug which matters in this hospital is coffee. Flynn, an inhibited, uptight, insecure neurotic, constantly suffering from lack of sleep and catholic guilt, finds his own personality problems nothing compared to the range of personality disorders around him. And of course the patients are sick as well.
The professionals populating the hospital and the claustrophobic world of the junior doctor include the dangerously bumptious consultant Mr Ron; the over-protective ward sister, Sister Hope; the devastatingly cool staff Nurse Judy, who enjoys sadistically rejecting the junior doctor's clumsy attentions; the mad German anaesthetist, The Gasman; the scandal-mongering gay theatre assistant, Terry; and Sid the slowest porter in the world. tlc is a jet black comedy with a surreal and off beat perspective on the state of modern medicine.
Reece Shearsmith (League of Gentlemen) plays Flynn; Alexander Armstrong (Armstrong and Miller) plays Noble; Georgia MacKenzie plays Nurse Judy; Llewella Gideon plays Sister Hope; Richard Griffiths plays Mr Ron; Tom Watt plays Sid the porter; Tim Brooke Taylor plays the chaplain; Erich Redman plays the Gasman; Martin Trenaman plays the man in the wheelchair; and Benedict Wong plays Terry. tlc is directed by Geoff Posner and the producers are David Tyler and Geoff Posner. It is a Pozzitive production for BBC TWO.
Episode Synopses for press use only are available from the BBC Press Office
(David Balston - Goodies-l - November 5th)
* Bill's appearance in "The Detectives" episode 'Birds in the Hand' gets another outing on Saturday 26th October at 5.30pm on Bravo.
(David Balston - Goodies-l - October 15th)
*Just noticed in this month's Foxtel magazine that the Welsh sitcom "Fun at the Funeral Parlour" has its Australian premiere on UKTV next Tuesday.
The episode guest-starring Bill Oddie should therefore be on Thursday 24 October at 11.30pm, episode 3 of series 1.
(Garry Johnstone - Goodies-l - October 20th)
* Graeme's appearance in "TV Scrabble" is repeated on Saturday 26th October at 10pm and again on Sunday 27th October at 2.35pm on Challenge TV.
(David Balston - Goodies-l - October 15th)
* "The Death List" episode of "Yes Minister (featuring Graeme Garden) is scheduled to air on the Australian Pay TV channel UKTV (available on Foxtel and Austar) Monday 28/October/2002 at:
All times quoted are in AEDST which means QLD, SA, WA satellite viewers will have to make the standard adjustments.
(from information by Raymond - Goodies-l - October 13th)
* Beat the Kids featuring Graeme gets another recording.
A brand new panel game for BBC Radio 4, devised by Andy Hamilton and Libby Asher.
Beat The Kids will put a big grin on the face of anyone with experience of dealing with kids, or indeed of being a kid themselves.
Chaired by Emma Freud, with Dr Graeme Garden as the outrageously opinionated, resident parentologist.
Date of show: Monday 16th December
Studio doors open: 7.15 p.m.
Age Limit: Those under 14 years of age will not be admitted.
Venue: The Cochrane Theatre,
Nearest tube: Holborn
You can apply for tickets
Online: via the ticket details page for the programme
(David Balston - Goodies-l - November 6th)
I'M SORRY I HAVEN'T A CLUE
* According to UK retailer Choices Direct's website, the "I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue Anniversary Special" (due out on 4 November) will contain "the I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue Anniversary Special and I'm Sorry I Haven't A Desert Island plus the first ever edition of the programme, originally broadcast on 11 April 1972."
I'm guessing that the Anniversary special referred to is the 45 minute 35th anniversary show from earlier this year.
(Lisa Manekofsky - Goodies-l - October 12th)
* "I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue" makes a very welcome return from Monday 15th November 2002 at 6.30pm on Radio 4. The show is repeated the following Sunday. The first guest will be Andy Hamilton.
(David Balston - Goodies-l - November 8th)
5. GOODIES EPISODE SUMMARY
(by Brett Allender)
Series 5, Episode 11
First screened: 21st April 1975
An old lady walks past the South African Tourist Office in London and is suddenly ambushed by two officers, covered with a net and dragged inside. Moments later, the Goodies arrive and head into the office ("through door and turn white"!) to find a tourist officer, who tinkles away solely on the white keys of his piano while "dreaming of a white Christmas" and shoves the old lady into a wooden crate. Tim and Bill are shoved into a crate as well, while Graeme is suspected of being a black because of his fuzzy hair and has his skin colour checked by the officer, who licks a finger and rubs it on Graeme's face! His brown 'I'm a Goody' tie is painted white upon orders from the officer, as Graeme tells the officer that he isn't the slightest smidgeon dusky (despite liking reggae music and his Daddy being a bus conductor!).
The Goodies have been sent for by the tourist office to make a film that encourages more people to go to South Africa, as it has very few immigrants (hence the enforced 'package tours' in wooden crates!) and a squirrel grip on Bill is enough to convince the Goodies to take the job. Their film shows the wonderful opportunities for immigrants in "Sarth Efrikker", who can be free, own a luxurious house and be their own boss, except that the 'immigrant' in the film is Tim dressed up as a black and white minstrel! The furious tourist officer smashes the camera and film in disgust, but Tim has already sent copies of the film out to tv stations and cinemas and this causes South Africa to be flooded with Britain's black immigrants.
Tim wants to get as far away from the tourist office as possible and is talked into emigrating to South Africa (by having a poker wrapped around his neck by the enraged officer) along with Bill and Graeme to increase the number of whites there. Upon arrival in South Africa, they find all of the blacks in South Africa leaving for Britain and instead of receiving a welcome at customs, Tim is biffed with a truncheon by the tourist officer, who has been flown home in disgrace. He tells them that the visiting blacks from Britain have told their South African counterparts how good life is there and now there isn't a single black person left in South Africa.
The Goodies settle into a ranch on the edge of the jungle, but find that life in South Africa is tough without a "jigaboo houseboy" to do all of the cleaning work. The tourist officer swings in on a vine like Tarzan and goes berserk at them when they serve their own tea (which forces the hurried removal of their aprons), then explains that the government has introduced a new form of segregation now that the blacks have left the country - apart-height! All of the rules which applied to black people now apply to those who are too short to reach a line drawn on a wall chart, so Bill is soon put to work and slaves away doing grotty jobs for his big'un masters. A siren signals curfew time for the little'uns to go to their compound, but Bill runs away ("feet, do your stuff!") and leads the police on a merry dance before he is finally captured (after he falls in the pool and is barely able to stand afloat in the shallow end) and heaved over the gate of the compound along with Cape Town's entire population of jockeys.
Meanwhile Graeme and Tim enjoy their new-found lifestyle of hunting during the day and being waited on at evenings by their jockey house boy Lester (who also doubles as a punching bag), but all is not well as the jockeys have become restless and Bill is spotted playing the jungle drums. Graeme and Tim join in the rhythm but suddenly all goes deathly quiet and Tim becomes hysterical (although Graeme calms him down by swatting a fly on his face!). They receive a message on the drums (thrown at Graeme) and the jockeys want independence and a full vote (instead of their present half a vote for being half the size!), so Graeme and Tim decide to head back to the safety of town at first light.
Their trek across the plains is watched closely by jockeys who sit high in the trees (and Bill who hides behind a leaf!) and soon the two big'uns are surrounded. After various exchanges with blowpipes, Tim plays a winning game of croquet using jockeys as hoops, then he and Graeme are tied to a totem pole and launched like a rocket before they scramble to town, only to be arrested by a swarm of tiny police on tricycles. The police can't reach up high enough to handcuff their wrists, so they are chained by the ankles and carted off to the police station, where there is a jubilant gathering of the little'uns and their new Prime Mini-ster.
Bill turns down their kind offer to make him King of South Africa and after he threatens to chop the legs off the "nasty big bullies" Tim and Graeme, he shows mercy and decides that they all should head for home. However the mounted head of the tourist officer on the wall warns them that things have changed in Britain since they had left and upon their arrival home by boat, they find black customs officers and other black citizens who expect the Goodies to carry bags for them. The approaching royal limousine has a black, bangle-clad hand that waves to the masses who line the streets and the sight of a black Enoch Powell on a tv screen makes them reach for the shoeshine to blacken their own faces with.
* Tim (reading sign): "South African Tourist Board. Through door and turn white."
* Tourist Officer (TO): "Good men. Now here's your camera."
Graeme: "Black and white?"
TO: "Just white!"
* Bill (impersonating a black person): "Howdy do dere honey. Zippety doo dah!"
Tim (turns away and adjusts his fly): "Oh I'm sorry, I didn't know it was undone!"
* TO (to Tim): "Hey you! It's all your fault. You made it look as if South Africa were full of black people."
Bill: "Worse than that, it looked as though it were full of black and white minstrels!" (laughs)
TO (grabs Bill by the jacket menacingly): "In South Africa we have white and white minstrels!"
* TO (reading his poem out): "I wandered lonely as a cloud. That floats on high over veldts and jungle. When all at once I spied a crowd. A host of lovely daffoldungles! See ... we are human!"
* Bill (about Graeme and Tim): "How shall we cut them down to size?"
Prime Mini-ster: "Chop off their legs!"
Bill: "Chop off their legs!"
Tim (horrified): "You wouldn't dare!"
Bill "Oh yes we would!"
Tim & Graeme: "Oh no you wouldn't!"
TO's head mounted on wall: "Oh yes he would!"
* The multitude of blatant and subtle swipes at apartheid in the South African Tourist Office including its 'Through the door and turn white' sign, completely white furnishings and crockery, the Tourist Officer playing only the white keys of his piano while singing 'White Christmas', Graeme's brown tie being painted white, dark sunglasses being smashed in disgust and replaced with white glasses and the coffee being made totally of milk.
* The Goodies film encouraging more immigrants to come to "Sarth Efrikker" by using Tim painted up as a black and white minstrel to show how wonderful life is for black people there, including owning a posh car, a huge company building (Sambo Enterprises!), a swimming pool (complete with sharks!) and going on safari (with a dog as a lion) and blasting the hell out of the wildlife with a camera.
* Tim doing the housework at their ranch in the jungle and getting cross with Bill for using derogatory terms about black people like "nig-nogs", "jigaboo houseboy" and "sambo service". He starts to deliver a proud speech about racial equality, but then admits that he is only doing the menial chores himself because "all the nig-nogs have gone", before sheepishly realising what he has just said.
* The introduction of apart-height where Graeme and Tim pass the test, but Bill comes up short of the mark and has to fill the former role of the blacks according to the script ("it will be an honour, Bwana!") and doing all the grotty jobs including licking boots, scratching hair, mowing the jungle, having his bum kicked and getting beaten to death by his master's guest!
* Bill's epic attempt to flee the height detector-wielding cops to the top tune of 'Run', especially his pipsqueak 'pitstop' between two burly officers, racing around the streets inside a mannequin from Big Un Fashions before eventually crashing into a lamppost, climbing on the back of a guy peering through a knothole in the pool wall only for it to look like his legs have detached from his upper body when the other guy walks away and the understated visual gag at the start of the sequence which has posters of performances by Ronnie Corbett and Snow White & The Seven Dwarves stamped with 'banned' and 'cancelled' under the new legislation.
* The night-time scenes at the ranch where Graeme and Tim (clad in white jackets and black ties) chat about their fine day's hunting, including proudly displaying their mounted trophies of a rogue male (a tiny meerkat) and their hunting boy Scobie (who was mauled by the meerkat), almost knocking servant Lester's block off, Graeme finally killing a tarantula after heaps of whacks, stomps and even a couple of rifle blasts, then wanting it to be mounted, all the while swatting flies on their faces (and on each others faces as well).
* A number of cameos including Tim commenting that the stars look like hundreds of tiny pairs of eyes followed by an uneasy silence and Graeme remarking "They ARE hundreds of tiny pairs of eyes!", Graeme receiving a "message on the drums" with a drum being thrown and almost knocking him off his feet, his blowpipe effort where he lobs a heap of fruit on a sleeping Bill to form a 'smiley face' and the scenes of how much things have changed when they return to England, especially the black, bangle-covered hand waving from the royal limo.
Philip Madoc, Oscar James, Albert Wilkinson
MY 2 CENTS WORTH
A terrific piece of deeply satirical, very humourous and quite brave comedy, especially given that it was made when the apartheid issue was an extremely hot potato causing trade sanctions and strained diplomatic relations between South Africa and other nations worldwide. Even braver was the classic guest role of Phillip Madoc as the 'white honourable' South African tourist officer, as he would have risked being jailed or lynched if he ever returned to his home country!
BLACK PUDDING RATINGS SYSTEM:
IIIII - Superstar.
IIII - Officially amazing.
III - Goody goody yum yum.
II - Fair-y punkmother.
I - Tripe on t' pikelets.
December Episode Summary –
OK Tea Rooms
6. GOODIES COR COMICS SYNOPSIS #12
(by Linda Kay)
24th March 1973 No. 35 (mistakenly listed as No. 34 in the News-Sheet section)
Cover banner: "Goody-Goody! TV Stars "The Goodies" Appear Inside!"
It was inevitable that some storylines which had been (or would be) covered by the Goodies would also be touched upon in the Cor!! comics. In this outing, the Goodies delve into the world of movie-making, a subject they would lampoon themselves quite deftly in their award-winning television episode "Movies". In their own spoof of the film-world they were in control of their own productions, playing the parts of the mad directors themselves. In this Cor!! comic they suffer humility in front of the lens at the hands of an over-the-top producer / director ... considering the crazy stunts this guy puts them through in his retelling of the classic Dumas story it's no wonder he had to seek out non-union actors (in the form of The Goodies) for the parts!
Header: THE GOODIES HAVE A "STAB" AT PLAYING THE THREE MUSKETEERS!
The Goodies' office is invaded by a stout man wearing jodhpurs, a backwards cap and brandishing a megaphone. Bill, who has opened the door, is obviously disturbed by the man's blaring entrance, while Graeme stands nearby and Tim sits at a desk (reading an issue of Cor!!).
IVAN OSCAR: Say, Goodies, I need your help!
GRAEME: Wow, it's the famous film producer, Ivan Oscar!
Ivan Oscar actually places his megaphone behind his back as he explains his predicament.
IVAN OSCAR: I'm making a "Three Musketeers" epic, but I can't find *three* men brave enough to play the parts!
Tim is already entering into the spirit of the thing by wielding a fencing foil and casually twirling the famous producer's cap from the man's head as Bill and Graeme watch.
TIM: Leave it to the Goodies ... we do *anything*!
We next see the Goodies in full Musketeer regalia riding their trandem behind Ivan Oscar's car on their way to the movie set (the Goodies flag has been attached to the end of a prop battle spear).
TIM: Huh he could have given us a lift to the studio!
They arrive on the set of a large castle and stand near a catapult as the producer (who is apparently doubling as the film's director, which his outfit would have originally indicated) shouts out directions through his megaphone.
WHEN THE GOODIES ARRIVED ...
IVAN OSCAR: The Musketeers have to rescue the maiden from the castle! First one tries to *catapult* in ... !
BILL: Er .. ? That's going to *stretch* someone's luck a bit far!
Tim and Graeme promptly deposit Bill into the waiting catapult.
GRAEME: In other words, you're volunteering, eh?
BILL: Help! I didn't say that!
With a cut of Tim's sword on the catapult's launch rope Bill becomes airborne, flying toward the British flag flying above the castle walls. Somehow Bill manages to get hold of the flag and turns it into a makeshift parachute, floating safely to the ground.
BILL: Hey, I'm all right "Jack"!
IVAN OSCAR: Great stuff - keep that camera rolling!
The Goodies are now awaiting instruction from Ivan Oscar for the next scene. Tim and Graeme reach down to lift a battering ram from the ground.
IVAN OSCAR: Next you try to batter the door down - there's the battering ram!
TIM: So long as *we* don't *get* a battering!
The Goodies shoulder the battering ram and charge across the drawbridge toward the castle's large wooden door as Ivan Oscar directs the men on the battlements above.
IVAN OSCAR: Ready with the "boiling" oil!
GRAEME: Oh no!
Gobs of black oil plop down on the Goodies as they drop the battering ram with a loud KLADDUNKY on their right feet.
BILL: Grough! It *is* oil!
GRAEME: Lucky it's not boiling, though - yerk!
TIM: Aargh! Me foot!
The Goodies rush at the producer, flinging drops of oil all around them in their fury.
TIM: Grr, look at the mess we're in - all my feathers are oiled up!
BILL: Yeah, we're giving you the bird!
IVAN OSCAR: Don't get in a "state" Goodies - next the Musketeers swim the moat! You'll soon get cleaned up!
The Goodies leap into the moat and begin swimming across as the camera rolls.
TIM: Hey, this is better - he's even had the water warmed for us!
CAMERAMAN: Not for *you*, mate! The imported *crocodiles* couldn't stand the cold!
Sure enough a huge crocodile starts after the Goodies, who swim for their lives.
BILL: CROCODILES! Yelp!
The Goodies reach the castle and seem to defy gravity as they walk up the outside wall, barely escaping the jaws of the crocodile below (although he gets a good chunk of Bill's cape). It turns out they have suction cups on the bottom of their boots.
GRAEME: I knew that these sucker soles I *invented* would come in useful!
TIM: *We're* the suckers if you ask me!
Inside the castle they find the "maiden" they are to rescue, who turns out to be dressed more like a Swedish milk maid (and is about as big as a cow). They're understandably distressed at her enthusiastic request.
MAIDEN: Rescued at last! Which one of you handsome Musketeers will carry me to safety?
GRAEME: Bill and I have done our bit, Tim - it's your turn!
The Goodies exit the castle, Tim leading the way as he struggles to carry the burdensome maiden.
IVAN OSCAR: That just about wraps it up, fellows!
TIM: Puff! Pant!
The Goodies approach the producer / director, looking worn but determined.
TIM: Er . . . doesn't this kind of film usually end with the heroes chasing the villain and giving him what for?
IVAN OSCAR: That's a great idea! Er ... but where do we get the villain from?
The Goodies start after Ivan Oscar with a vengeance and he wisely prepares to run.
GRAEME: We know who the villain of this piece is, don't we lads?
BILL: You bet!
IVAN OSCAR: Er ... suddenly it doesn't seem like such a good finale!
We last see the Goodies chasing down Ivan Oscar on their trandem as he runs ahead, being squirted by an oil can aimed by Tim, the seat of his pants chomped by a sharp-toothed spring trap on an extension device mounted to the front of the bike, and his head pelted with eggs being slingshot by Graeme. Bill sits in the back filming the proceedings with a small hand held movie camera.
IVAN OSCAR: Help! Grough! Lower the curtains ... roll the credits!
BILL: Great stuff! I must get a film of this!
Sign-Off Line: THE FOCUS IS ON FUN WHEN OUR TV CHUCKLE-CHAMPS RETURN NEXT WEEK!
RATING (using the BLACK PUDDING RATING SYSTEM):
II - Fair-y punkmother.
This is a good idea that unfortunately goes nowhere fast. While the individual scenarios have some potential their execution falls short of being satisfactory, hindered greatly by weak dialogue, jokes that don't quite have enough punch and inconsistent and unrelated bits. For instance, the sudden introduction of Graeme's sucker soles as they're escaping the crocodile has nothing to do with anything previous to it and it doesn't stand to reason how they could be acting in such boots all along (and why Graeme would have fashioned soles for Musketeer costume boots in the first place . . . now that would be fore-planning!).
There's also a strange uneven-ness to the comic as a whole. Bill is hurled in the catapult but suffers no harm as a result. Then Graeme makes a point of telling Tim that he and Bill have both done their bit but Graeme in fact didn't have any individual task he had to perform (unless you count the suction boots, which again didn't cause them any distress). Even Tim's task of carrying the overweight maiden didn't lead to any dire consequences. Their most distressing
situation was being doused with oil and dropping the battering ram on their feet. And none of these situations offer jokes which are strong enough to really justify their inclusion.
Adding to the strangeness is an odd sense of disproportion in many of the panels. The heights of the various Goodies change from panel to panel. In panel two Tim seems exceptionally tall compared to Bill and Graeme, and in panel one Bill's and Graeme's legs seem far too short. A recurring inconsistency in many of the Cor!! comics is the artists' tendency to make Tim the tallest. This can be somewhat understandable ... in watching the episodes there are occasions in which the difference between Tim and Graeme's height is difficult to gauge (overall it would appear Graeme is indeed the tallest) but the Cor!! comic artists will regularly change this throughout the comics (and in this case within the same strip)!
As far as art goes, though, the Musketeer outfits are drawn with delightful detail and there is a lot of movement and scope in the panels, so overall it is a pleasant comic to look at. And the artist doesn't forget to add the little touches in the background, such as the leaky faucet which apparently fills the moat of the castle and the graffiti "LOUIS XIII OUT!" scribbled on the moat wall.
Of special interest is the license plate on Ivan's car in panel three which reads Cor 1231. Could this comic have originally been slated to be published on December 31st, 1972, one week before the actual premiere date of the Goodies comic in Cor!!? Or does it actually read Cor 123! instead? The issue of this comic was nowhere near #123, so it may always be a matter of speculation as to what this particular license plate is referring to.
I'd like to make clear I rate these comics only in comparison to one another, and that makes it somewhat difficult as there are no really awful comics in the whole of the Cor!! canon. But to be fair to the individual comic stories that really shine, this one does fall quite a bit short of their best work.
To view these strips online, you can now visit this page:
We'll post the currently reviewed issue plus the two previous issues for latecomers.
NEXT C&G EDITION: #84: 12th December 2002.
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